Written By: Fletcher Bonin
Homeshake lead singer Peter Sagar actively creates the mellow R&B genre with his latest release Fresh Air. As the title suggests, Sagar’s mission with this latest album is to clear the listener’s mind of the crushing negativity that has so far characterized 2017. The Canadian native channels his creativity into all fourteen tracks of this loose and relaxed album. Each song is a compilation of drifting, loosely arranged vocals and pulsating, experimental instrumentals. Sagar’s controlled tenor vocals drift through our headphones as though from a distant void, lingering on each carefully chosen lyric like a bird upon a branch. Somehow he is able to maintain a vocal arrangement that sounds as though he has just woken up, lyrics comprised of thoughts caught between dream and reality. There is something pleasingly subdued, or perhaps stoned, about his unique sound.
The track ‘Call Me Up’ is a certified hit. This slow, beautifully jazzy track is one of my favorites off the album. Lightly stifled horns back up Sagar’s smooth, relaxed tenor. There is something delightfully nonchalant about Sagar’s musical style. Each track achieves the sensation of being simultaneously obsessively arranged while maintain a liquid, natural, even spontaneous feel. On ‘Call Me Up’, he sings, “we got a little space between us, I know you want me too, and there’s something we can do” and he continues into the refrain “anytime you just want to call me up, and I’ll answer you, on the phone.” His voice ranges pleasantly from smooth, round high notes to an ever higher, almost nasal pitch that manages to both sooth and intrigue. His is a voice worth listening to.
The track ‘This Way’ is moody and wonderful. The shimmering instrumentals compliment Sagar’s rich, textured vocals. On this track, he is able to communicate frustration and contemplation through his impeccable and challenging tone. Delicately, he sings “come and sit and stay awhile, you can relax it’s me.” Sagar’s voice creates a breathtaking sense of vulnerability through his tender handling of each word.
Perhaps my favorite song off the album is the strange and alluring ‘Khmlwugh’. He sings “she shouldn’t have to be the one who’s taking care of me, let’s kiss it, hug it, make it, love it.” He goes on to sing about smoking weed in no uncertain terms. However, my claim is that you can forgo the weed and simply listen to Fresh Air, as I find the effects to be delightfully similar.